If the Brewers go on to win their division, they might look back on this past weekend’s series at Wrigley Field as the catalyst for overcoming the defending World Series champion Cubs. It was a series defined on the field by dominant Milwaukee pitching. Off the field, however, it was defined by a fun, loose Brewers team with a chip on its shoulder — a group that perhaps sees itself as the team to beat in the NL Central. Add it all up and it made for Milwaukee's first sweep of the Cubs in Chicago since 2002, as the Brewers sent a message that they plan to be the team on Lake Michigan that plays October baseball. That message was made clear in the Brewers' three wins, but it also came packaged with good-natured mind games. Borrowing from a practice common on the Indians, several members of the Brewers constructed a Javier Baez look-a-like from a baseball and a Gatorade bottle and placed it near the railing for Baez to see during Friday night’s game. The Cubs' shortstop was dismissive at the time, joking with the Milwaukee dugout and flashing four fingers and waving them away while laughing. The four fingers were meant to remind the Brewers of the Cubs’ lead in the NL Central at the time, but that lead has since been cut in half and the Cubs’ locker room spirit is decidedly less jocular.
Brewers playing loose, acting like team to beat in NL Central
Sporting News | Sep 11